Taekwondo forms, poomses in Korean - students appear to often love them or they hate them. In any event the taekwondo forms are something the taekwondo student must learn. The properly performed forms will help the student to be a little more comfortable in their stances as well as doing several moves successively. Some other important things about rehearsing the forms is increased balance, timing and coordination. Correct breathing should also be used while doing the form reinforcing this habit in the student.

Taekwondo FormCredit: Allen StonerAs a non-aggressive sport, taekwondo forms genearally start on a defensive move, typically a block. After this initial defensive move the form will then advance into counter attack moves, but will still incorporate many defensive moves. The forms will become somewhat more difficult as the student advances to higher belts, introducing more advanced sequences of moves and even more of them.

Knowing a certain form will likely be of little help when it comes to a genuine fight. But rehearsing the forms consistently will certainly have the student accustomed to thinking of executing several taekwondo moves as one sequence and defending themselves from their attacker. The forms are originally based from moves related to defending and attacking an actual opponent, they've just been formalized and codified to help the student learn them. Whilst learning the taekwondo forms it can often be useful to imagine an opponent that's being defended from or attacked, depending on the steps of the form being performed.

Taekwondo Form

Kibon Il Jang

Each belt level has its own taekwondo form associated with it. To progress to the next belt the student must learn and demonstrate the form for their instructor. 
A student testing for their black belt may be asked to do any number for forms, in any order, so it is important to not just commit the taekwondo form to short term memory. Higher level belts are often asked to assist with the lower belts in learning their forms, this helps both learn and remember the form. 

Follow this advice to aid in mastering the taekwondo forms: 

  • Split the form down into simple to remember parts and add more as the first become a lot easier. 
  • Imagine being attacked or fighting an particular foe at each one of the forms elements. 
  • Consult with the instructor for advice, they have helped a lot of students through learning the very same form, and may well have some advice on assisting you to remember it. It's uncanny how an instructor can know exactly where the student executing a form is frozen in the process and give them the subsequent move. 
  • Practice, practice, practice... then practice even more. Try to fit in at least one full routine every day, more if possible. 
  • Visualize yourself doing the form if you can't actually do it. Picture yourself doing while waiting in line for lunch, etc. 
  • Aid another taekwondo student with the form, this can aid you both. 

The two most common sets of taekwondo forms are Taequek forms, utilized by the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) and Palgwe forms, used by the International Taekwondo Federation). There are other forms, including Phyong Ahn forms, Jhoon Rhee Martial Ballet and Chang Hon forms. The same form can be performed just a bit differently from school to school, or the schools might use a totally different group of forms. 

The Chang-Hon forms with patterns called "teul" require these forms to achieve black belt: 

  • Sa-ju Jji-reu-gi 
  • Sa-ju Mak-gi 
  • Cheon-Ji 
  • Dan-gun 
  • Do-san 
  • Weon-Hyo 
  • Yul-Gok 
  • Jung-Geun 
  • Toe-gye 
  • Sa-ju Ttul-gi 
  • Hwa-Rang 

There are many more forms demanded for the various levels of black belt.